This appeal followed the refusal of planning permission for a first floor side extension. There were added complexities to this appeal as the property is located in the Thorner Conservation Area and is considered to be a positive contributor to the Conservation Area.
Any changes to buildings within a Conservation Area attract a high level of scrutiny from the Local Planning Authority. In addition to the standard planning considerations there are further requirements to ensure the character of the Conservation Area is not harmed by the development. In many cases the Local Planning Authority will have produced a Character Area Assessment - this enables us to focus the arguments we make in the Appeal Statement on aspects which will have tangible impact on the decision.
In this case our focus was on stressing how the proposed change would remove aspects of the building that would be considered harmful to the Conservation Area and these would be replaced by elements more in keeping with its character.
Using the photograph shown, we were able to present an argument that the wooden gable sitting atop the boundary wall was a damaging feature and one that would be replaced as part of the proposal. The extension would sit behind the wall, thus creating a much improved and more harmonious view from Carr Lane.
In the Inspectors report it was noted:
“the conservatory is particularly at odds with the host building and outbuilding and does not contribute to this established character in a positive manner. Moreover, the first-floor extension would also be set-back from the existing retaining wall to the front, aligned with the main building line of the dwelling, while also being set-down from the ridge of the host roof. This would allow it to remain subservient to its host and soften the introduction of additional mass at first-floor level. The proposed extension would therefore add uniformity and coherence to the appearance of the host building when viewed from Carr Lane”
Additional arguments were presented relating to views from other vantage points within the Conservation Area and, importantly, the revisions that were made to the proposal that were not fully considered by the LPA’s Conservation Team. The supporting arguments and evidence we presented in respect of these changes were accepted by the Planning Inspector and were deemed acceptable to overcome the refusal and objections to the proposal from both the Parish Council and neighbouring residents.
A further comment from the Inspector in relation to the objections was:
“I note the objections of neighbours that there would be an increase of overlooking as a result of the first-floor extension affording views towards 2a Tithe Barn. However, from my observations there already exists overlooking on both sides, with windows of both properties facing one another. Given the extension would be further from 2a Tithe Barn due to its orientation and views would be of a parking area, I would not consider a requirement for obscure glazing, as suggested by the Council, necessary”
It is pleasing when any appeal is successful, but when the arguments are more complex and include heritage considerations such as this one it is especially pleasing and a great win for the team